As all good bar crawls need a theme VisitCanberra has compiled some options: choose between cocktails with a view, local breweries where you can meet the maker, or wine bars serving drops from the Canberra region.
Cocktails with a view
First stop is The Howling Moon, a rooftop bar with panoramic views of Canberra’s tree-lined north at The Canberra Rex Hotel. Time your visit with sunset to soak in the golden rays as you sip on their signature cocktail, One Night in Braddon.
Catch the light rail one stop or enjoy a 10-minute walk to Tipsy Bull, where you will be saying ‘holy cow’ to everything from their food to their drinks. Located on Lonsdale Street in the heart of Canberra’s foodie precinct, Tipsy Bull specialises in gin. Choose between 230 different gin varieties served alongside flavour enhancers, like pepper berries and lemon myrtle, for you to experiment with.
For the next venue you’ll need to enlist the help of your GPS. It’s only a short walk away but you’ll need help finding this secret speakeasy as Molly's address isn't a street name and number, but a set of geographic coordinates. Behind their unmarked door lies a 1920s-inspired speakeasy, featuring more than 500 kinds of whisky, a handful of expert bartenders, some super-comfy burgundy banquettes and a few dazzling crystal chandeliers. There's also a spectacular, 100-year-old grand piano, which gets played on live jazz nights (usually every Tuesday).
Travel 50 metres and 40-odd years back in time to 88mph. Menus are encased in VHS boxes, with the corresponding tapes decorating the entry wall, and frozen cocktails are all the rage at this kitsch club. Karaoke is also on the cards at this venue that celebrates the best bits of the 80s.
Wine bars serving drops from the Canberra region
For lovers of riesling, Rizla is the perfect place to start a wine wander. This bar is the first in Australia to be devoted to the mighty riesling. Enjoy a glass before checking out the boutiques and handcrafted goods on sale on Lonsdale Street.
As you wander up the road be sure to stop by Bacaro (open Thursday to Saturday, 5pm to 11pm), nestled behind Italian and Sons. Gourmet Traveller awarded this “secret laneway bar with ripping pizza” in their Best Bars of 2019 accolade. No wonder Delicious magazine also rated it the ACT’s Best Pizza of 2019.
Stroll the 700m to Amici, Canberra’s new deli and wine bar. House in the historic Melbourne building, people watch from their 1920s arch windows before glancing up to appreciate their modern wallpapered ceiling. Enjoy a hand-stretched pizza with a perfectly paired wine or sip on a negroni mixed in a mini fountain.
End your eve at Bar Rochford with their seasonal menu. Fine food, exciting wine producers, sour beers and good jams are their bread and butter, so to speak. Keep an eye out for surprising design features, like the bench seats upholstered with wattle gum leather from the House of Representatives and the toilet roll holders that are the Australian emblem.
Local breweries where you can meet the maker
Capital Brewing Co is served in bars across the country, but locals say it tastes better at the Fyshwick brewery itself. Gather around a table in their epic shed and sip your way through the collection — from staples like the crisp, clean Coast Ale, to the tropical-tinged Evil Eye Red IPA, inspired by a tattooed tree stump on the shores of Lake George.
Continue your beer tasting trip through Fyshwick at Zierholz Premium Brewery Restaurant & Bar. At Zierholz, the northern and southern hemispheres combine in every glass as German brewing techniques get a unique Canberran twist. If you’re craving something sweet order the Porter, a smooth drop that’s a mix of chocolate, caramel and biscuit flavours.
Head into Braddon for the next few venues, starting with BentSpoke Brewing Co. As the name suggests, BentSpoke is a brewpub that isn't afraid of an adventure or bending a few spokes along the way. This sense of adventure is reflected in their boundary-pushing brews, including the world’s first double red brut IPA that contains six types of hops and a gluten-free ginger beer.
Head down Lonsdale Street to uncover a local favourite, Braddon Brew. Formed by a father and son duo with a joint passion for coffee and beer, this intimate venue has a rotating keg system serving up craft classics and limited small batch releases. Be warned, if you opt for a coffee their perfect roast will feature in all your daydreams for years to come.
Want more? Discover more of Canberra foodie scene here.
Our top tip for acing the next morning?
Start the next day off right with brunch. See our top recommendations for healthy eats that are sure to replenish you and your bar crawl crew. Hint: if you’re after a little hair of the dog, head to Morning Glory for a breakfast cocktail. Vietnamese iced coffee with bourbon, crème de cacao, condensed milk and espresso, anyone?